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Interview with our Antonia, Amanda Barron

Role in the show?

Antonia

Brief background?

I’m a native of the UK but have lived and worked as an actress in NYC for the past 15 years. I’m passionate about ensemble driven theatre and love Shakespeare. I work in all areas of theatre, film and tv.

Favorite Shakespeare play and why?

Only one! That’s cruel. No, really, it’s too hard. I have three favorites: Much Ado for its blend of comedy and tragedy, Titus Andronicus for its raw, ultra-violent exploration of grief, and Richard II for it stunningly beautiful poetry.

Two words to describe Much Ado?

Fake News. Gossip. Oops, that’s three isn’t it?

What kind of preparation did you do for the role?

Antonia is a newly created role for this production . She’s a combination of two old men: Antonio and the Friar and two funny women: Margret and Ursula. So I had free reign to create whoever I wanted to. At least within the world of this version of the play. I always start with the script and mine that for all it’s worth to see what clues I can find about the character. And, Shakespeare is an actor’s dream as everything is right there in the language on the page. After that it’s about understanding the world we are playing in inside this production. Then it’s finding her voice and physical characteristics.

What makes this adaptation different from another Shakespeare play you’ve been in?

This one is especially wonderful for me as it’s one of my favorite plays and I’ve done it before so I know it very well. But what makes this production different is setting this show in the world of tech and social media. Seeing the characters deal with fake news, rumors and bullying really brings this production into today and makes it very relevant with our current social and political climate.

What is the most difficult aspect of your role or the play?

I think that with any supporting character, and especially one that is an amalgam of many different characters with different points of view, it can be a challenge to discover the arch of the character’s journey through the play. Although in this production I’m almost spoiled for choice really, as I have four characters rolled into one, so it’s not a bad problem to have.